10 Takeaways from Now What? 2014

This year’s conference took a deep-dive looking at what content is (and could be) and looked at specifics on how to create and measure the success of content.

  • Apr. 25 2014

Online success is not a website. A message that inspires a desired action is what matters.

The Now What 2014 Conference took a deep-dive looking at what content is (and could be) and looked at specifics on how to create and measure the success of content. This wide-range of activities begins on "Day 2" after a site is launched and answers the important question. We have a website ... now what?

From eight speakers and two workshops, there were 10 key content management takeaways from Now What 2014:

  1. The "stuff" (or content) matters, not the form.
  2. Pages are dead. If we think in terms of a page or ink on paper, we create junk to fill it up. Focus instead on the purity of the message in a way that can be reassembled on myriad devices. The message should serve a goal. If it doesn't, it's not needed.
  3. Content is the message visitors see on whatever device they're using. Universal analytics from Google helps us track users across devices. Set macro and micro goals so you make money but also get visitors to engage with your content.
  4. The way you work is your methodology. For long term success, map your process and continually improve it. Having a methodology helps your team share a consistent message.
  5. We know most about the customer before the launch of a website. As content managers, how do we continue to know and learn about visitors after launch? Knowing our visitors helps improve their experience.
  6. Personalization is here. You can personalize your message based on the who is reading it, where they're visiting from, where they work and more. At the end of the day, you should be able to say: If we can deliver [this content] to [this specific person] we can improve [this metric].
  7. There is no shortage of content management tools. This is the new normal, and the idea of a suite of products is a myth. This plethora of tools is good for content managers, but it means we are inundated with options and ways to screw up. At the end of the day, our content should rise above tools.
  8. Data is the raw facts. Without context, data doesn't mean much, so we need to take that data and turn it into information. Information creates knowledge which helps us take action. You data ultimately tells a story of what happens to the visitor.
  9. Now What? Well, it's not over. Your digital property is a product and is always evolving. You don't build and launch. You build, tweak, improve, measure and keep working.
  10. Deane is an Oakland Raiders fan. [Insert your own judgement here].

Thanks for joining us at What Now 2014. If you couldn't make it or want to learn more about the speakers and topics, make sure to visit NowWhatConference.com.